So, I've been asked by a few people what my school day looks like and what curriculum we have chosen to use. This is our 5th year of homeschooling. I am by no means and expert, but we have figured out what works for us and have fallen into a bit of a rythym. So here is a quick overview of what curriculum we use.
As a general model we have chosen to use the classical model for homeschooling. We use classical conversations as our main curriculum. It just kind of makes sense for our kids. We like the idea that the classical model uses a lot of repetition until mastery and has a heavy emphasis on history, science and art. My favorite thing though, is that it teaches all of these subjects as a cohesive whole as opposed to a bunch of separated parts. For a better definition of what CC or classical conversations feel free to go to Classicalconversations.com.
Ok, so, I have two 4th graders, a 2nd grader, a kindergartener, and a 1 year that thinks she is big and can do all the things. It is literally a one room school house. So, I have to simplify and be realistic.
THE BOYS....4TH GRADE
-Devotions- we are trying to teach the boys to independent in this. Each morning they do a page out of their book, except for Thursdays when clay teaches the sweetest little theology class.
-CC review-depending on the kid we either sing the review song or I have the older kids write out the memory work for that week. Just lots of review and repetition using all kinds of different learning strategies.
-Saxon 6/5-When the kids are in kindergarten I start them in the first grade saxon because they get most of the K saxon in VPK. If they need to slow down I totally can, but so far everyone has been good to work a little ahead. I like saxon because it introduces a concept and reviews it every lesson and builds so their is mastery of a concept as they learn more challenging concepts.
-Essentials-We haven't done this yet. I'm terrified. It's basically the whole language arts program using the IEW model. It is associated with CC. Basically it is learning how to write well, understand grammar, be able to communicate effectively through writing and using literature as a foundation for this learning. I will have a better definition in a few weeks once we have been through a few classes....if we survive.
-Writing Road to Reading- this is our spelling curriculum. Teaches phonograms, spelling rules and such. We do 10 words each day. Separate them into syllables, mark them for spelling rules and done.
-Mcalls-Crab Reading comprehension-I read a story out loud and they answer questions.
-Explode the Code - Great book for independent work.
-Cursive/handwriting- another great thing for independent work.
-Story of the World (history) - I play the audio book while the kids color the corresponding pages in the activity book.
-Reading (they can pick a book I approve of and have to read for at least 30 min...usually they get engrossed in the book and read for longer)
-Reading aloud- I pick a book associated with what we are learning in CC and they read aloud to the younger kids. Currently they are reading a book about Alexander the Great.
BAILEY KATE...SECOND GRADE
-Reading- BK has struggled with reading so my best friend, who was a 3rd grade teacher, is coming twice a week to work with her. She can be fun and creative and feed into bk's every artistic desire. I am not that mom for her!
-Bible-We just read through a story each morning and talk about it.
-Read aloud- I read a book to bk each day.
-Everything else is the same as the boys, just at different levels
JUDE - KINDERGARTEN
-100 Easy lessons to reading- praise God the child gets it and is reading!! I also add in a BOB book or 2 just because he wants to and is eating it up!
-Usborne wipe away books-mainly to keep him busy because he is flying through his work.
-Everything else is the same for Jude and he just gets what he gets, which is shockingly a lot!
I've also included some pictures of our schoolroom and how we have set it up. Once again, this is just what works for us. I keep each child's books in a bin so that it stays separate and fairly organized. I've learned to only buy sharpened pencils and to have them easily accessible so that doesn't add 30 min every time someone has to find or sharpen ANOTHER pencil. That file folder was made by Clay. They have to put their tablets there and can charge them and can only use them for an hour during rest time.
We usually start school at 8:30 and finish between 12:30 and 1. No one is allowed to play screens in the morning and if they have down time while waiting for me to work with them they can either read, do a puzzle or play Legos. Sometimes if they need to burn energy I'll send them outside to burn off some energy.
That's it! I try to keep it fairly simple and the same curriculum for the all the kids and they just move up each year. Most of what I use has been around forever (I think the reading comp books are actually from my mom from when I homeschooled). I have learned I am not a super creative, fluff teacher. I like to get done what we need to get done and move on. That's one reason I love CC. We do a science experiment and an awesome art project every week. Done and done!!! For those of you on the fence about homeschooling, you can do it! It's is definitely a sacrifice, but oh so worth it! Feel free to contact me if you have more specific questions.